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Bad Influence!

Bad Influence! is an early to mid-1990s British factual television programme broadcast on CITV between 1992 and 1996, and was produced in Leeds by Yorkshire Television (now known as ITV Studios). It looked at video games and computer technology, and was described as a "kid’s Tomorrow's World". It was shown on Thursday afternoons and had a run of four series of between 13 and 15 shows, each of 20 minutes duration. For three of the four series, it had the highest ratings of any CITV programme at the time. Its working title was Deep Techies, a colloquial term derived from 'techies' basically meaning technology-obsessed individuals.

Bad Influence! began during the 16 bit-era of computer and video gaming, and featured in-depth news, previews and reviews about the very latest in gaming and computer technology. The series ran long enough to feature the launch of the Nintendo 64 console (then acknowledged by its working title, the Ultra 64) in its fourth and final series. The show was originally presented by then children's TV presenters Violet Berlin and Andy Crane (of 1980s CBBC broom cupboard fame), who were studio based, and US teen actor Z Wright, who filed location reports from the US until Series 4. There was also a cheats segment character called Nam Rood (which is "Door Man" spelled backwards), an anarchic 'furtler' (AKA 'techie') who lived in a shed in the first two series, and then in the basement for Series 3. He would give viewers gaming cheats (written on cards he would stick to his forehead) in between mock experiment comedy sketches three times per episode. He would always greet viewers with his trademark catchphrases "slimy furtlers" and "scrotty furtlers", the term "furtlers" equating to the term "techies".

In Series 1, a spin-off Bad Influence! magazine was launched by Europress and promoted on the show, however only two editions were ever published.

In Series 2, as part of a report, Violet Berlin was included as a character in the Mega Drive game Micro Machines 2. She was also included in another video game in Series 4.

In Series 3, the show experienced a revamp. The virtual reality title sequence and credits, which by the end of Series 2 had begun to look somewhat dated, were replaced by a new, industrial-style title sequence, influenced by the mega-flop beat-em-up Rise of the Robots. There was also a remixed, industrial-style theme tune and a slightly more anarchic feel to the show, suggesting it was now targeting a slightly older teen audience. This demographic refocusing was in tune with gaming trends which were moving more towards older teens and younger adults, yet at odds with CITV viewer trends which showed that CITV audiences were actually getting younger. Also in Series 3, the Datablast section only appeared once, at the end of the series, which would prove to be its final appearance. Also making their final appearance were Z Wright and Nam Rood. In Series 4, the final series, Z Wright had been replaced by Violet Berlin presenting global reports (rather than solely US reports) and she was also granted her own slot, called Virtual Violet. Back in the studio, Crane was now joined by new co-presenter Sonya Saul. Nam Rood and the Datablast had both been discarded. In the final edition, Berlin, Crane and Saul all presented together in the studio, the only time this ever occurred.

Shortly after the 4th series ended, a report on the now defunct television information service Teletext reported that plans were afoot to remarket Bad Influence at a younger audience if it were to get a Series 5. However these plans were never implemented, most likely because gamers were getting older whilst CITV's audience was getting younger, and so would have had little appeal to CITV's increasingly younger audience. Subsequently, a fifth series was not commissioned and the show was axed.

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PART OF
Computers & Technology
Media Type
19
movies
Year
19
1993
1
1996
13
1995
15
1994
8
1992
Topics & Subjects
19
bad influence
19
citv
2
jurassic park
1
a first look at sleepwalker
1
a look ahead of games coming in the new year
1
a look at a computer-based animtion package
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Collection
Creator
19
citv
Language
19
English
SHOW DETAILS
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Title
Date Archived
Creator
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 947
favorite 0
comment 0
30/09/1993 Main Review: Asterix (SNES) Features: The Amiga CD32; Amiga Scrabble challenge and other games based on board games Report: The Virtual Geographic League
Topics: bad influence, citv, the amiga cd32, amiga scrabble challenge and the other games based on board...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 633
favorite 0
comment 0
23/09/1993 Main Review: Super Mario All Stars (SNES) Features: A look at the Dinosaurs CD-ROM; The luxury games consoles Report: Industrial Light and Magic
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at the dinsaurs cd-rom, the luxury games consoles, industrial light and...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 581
favorite 0
comment 0
14/01/1993 Main Review: Prince of Persia (SNES) Features: Gaming cheat devices; Robots; A first look at Sleepwalker Report: The CES in Las Vegas
Topics: bad influence, citv, gaming cheat devices, robots, a first look at sleepwalker, the ces in las...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 562
favorite 0
comment 0
07/10/1993 Main Review: Street Fighter 2 Turbo (SNES) Features: A Mega CD Karaoke add-on and a Karaoke Macbeth CD-ROM; The development of MPEG and the Reel Magic PC card Report: Turning movies into games
Topics: bad influence, citv, a mega cd karaoke add-on and a karaoke macbeth cd-rom, the development of mpeg...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 516
favorite 0
comment 0
16/09/1993 Main Review: Rocket Knight Adventures (MD) Features: Composing music on The Deluxe Music Construction Set 2; Playing Air Warrior over the telephone lines with other players Report: How a Jean Michel Jarre concert is staged
Topics: bad influence, citv, composing music on the deluxe music construction set2, playing air warrior of...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 469
favorite 0
comment 0
28/01/1993 Main Review: Super Star Wars (SNES) Features: Surround Sound at home; A virtual fish tank; The latest laser game Report: Universal Studios in Hollywood
Topics: bad influence, citv, surround sound at home, a virtual fish tank, the latest laser game, universal...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 457
favorite 0
comment 0
09/09/1993 Main Review: Jurassic Park (MD) Features: Personal computers that recognise handwriting; A look at the new CD systems and MPEG; A look at Mortal Kombat Report: The latest from the US including the 3DO
Topics: bad influence, citv, personal computers that recognise handwriting, a look at the new cd systems...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 455
favorite 1
comment 0
18/11/1993 Main Review: Yoshi’s Safari (SNES) Features: A look at Make My Video games; The rights and wrongs of video game piracy; The Dual Turbo IR MD controller Report: Using computers in fashion design
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at make my video games, the rights and wrongs of video game piracy, the...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 431
favorite 0
comment 0
21/01/1993 Main Review: Streets of Rage 2 (MD) Features: A look at Mario Paint; Reducing risk of epilepsy; A look at Stunt Island Report: The latest in puppet technology
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at mario paint, reducing risk of epilepsy, a look at stunt island, the...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 426
favorite 0
comment 0
04/11/1993 Main Review: Sonic Spinball (MD) Features: Using a PC Firework simulator package; The appeal of Beat ‘em ups; Andy's Bad Influence! fireworks display Report: SIGGRAPH ‘93
Topics: bad influence, citv, using a pc firework simulator package, the appeal of beat 'em ups, andy's bad...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 424
favorite 0
comment 0
14/10/1993 Main Review: Battletoads in Battlemaniacs (SNES) Features: The Atari Jaguar; Reports: Back to the Future the Ride; The Computer Cavern
Topics: bad influence, citv, the atari jaguar, back to the future the ride, the computer cavern
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 421
favorite 0
comment 0
09/01/1993 Main Review: Ecco the Dolphin (MD) Features: A look at Lemmings on different formats; Software on CD Report: Special effects on TV commercials
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at lemmings on different formats, software on cd, special effects on tv...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 409
favorite 0
comment 0
16/12/1993 Main Review: Super Empire Strikes Back (SNES) Features: The making of Rise of the Robots; A look ahead at games coming in the New Year; The 3DO Report: The MIT Media Lab
Topics: bad influence, citv, the making of rise of the robots, a look ahead of games coming in the new...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 395
favorite 0
comment 0
09/12/1993 Main Review: FIFA International Soccer (MD) Features: How you can play arcade games at home; The Cam Net headset; Games you build yourself Report: Walsal Arboretum Laser show
Topics: bad influence, citv, how you can play arcade games at home, the cam net headset, games you build...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 380
favorite 0
comment 0
28/10/1993 Main Review: Jurassic Park (SNES) Features: A look at new spooky games; Voice-activated software Report: Forthcoming Star Trek games
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at new spooky games, voice-activated software, forthcoming star trek...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 364
favorite 0
comment 0
21/10/1993 Main Review: Aladdin (MD) Features: The Thunder Seat accessory; A look at a computer- based animation package Report: How photos can be manipulated in advertising
Topics: bad influence, citv, the thunder seat accessory, a look at a computer-based animtion package, how...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 351
favorite 0
comment 0
11/11/1993 Main Review: Super Bomberman (SNES) Features: A look at the Oceans Below computer package; An A to Z guide to computers and computing Report: Thinking Machines' CM5 Super Computer
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at the oceans below computer package, an a to z guide to computers and...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 329
favorite 0
comment 0
02/12/1993 Main Review: Lawnmower Man (SNES) Features: A look at joystick, joypads and other control devices; The latest football games Report: IS Robotics
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at joystick, joypads and other control devices, the latest football...
Bad Influence!
by CITV
movies
eye 251
favorite 0
comment 0
25/11/1993 Main Review: Jungle Book (GG) Features: A look at Theme Park; Creating graphics using an Onyx Reality Engine 2 Report: The Other Side VR Arena
Topics: bad influence, citv, a look at theme park, creating graphics using an onyx reality engine 2, the...